Dan Wiederer at the Chicago Tribune quotes defensive end Akiem Hicks on what he thinks of the NFL draft:
“Asked Tuesday whether he at least takes a glance at the ubiquitous prognostications of whom the Bears might select with the No. 8 pick, Hicks shook his head.
“’I hate the draft,’ he said. ’Somebody coming to replace me? No. I haven’t watched the draft since I was in it (in 2012). Let’s put it that way.’
“So no thoughts, Akiem, on what the Bears can add in the draft to enliven the defense?
“’I don’t like the draft, dude,’ Hicks reiterated. ’I always like to see the same faces. I’m superstitious, but I also like things to stay the same to an extent. I like to see the same faces and have that camaraderie already built up.”’
Hicks’ attitude is hardly surprising and the only real mystery to me is why anyone would would expect anything else.
Hicks’ comments reminded me of the minor disaster that took place last year when quarterback Mike Glennon was invited to attend the Bears Draft Party last year only to see his eventual replacement taken #2 overall. It was quite a shock to Glennon who, up until that point, thought the team was 100% committed to him. It arguably was such a blow to his confidence that it practically doomed him to suffer a miserable start to the season and the eventual loss of his job.
So you’d figure that the Bears learned their lesson from this debacle and that they’re done inviting current Bears players to the party only to see their eventual replacements drafted, right?
You’d be wrong.
Among the invitees this year are back up running back Benny Cunningham, linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski and linebacker Roy Robertson-Harris. All could be sitting and watching their eventual replacement either in the lineup or on the roster be drafted. Not that anyone is safe. Glennon’s situation certainly proved that as no one expected the Bears to draft Mitch Trubisky. These are just the invitees who are in the most immediate danger.
I think Hicks is 100% right. It’s cruel and unusual punishment to ask players who have had their bodies used up by the NFL to watch the Bears select younger, healthier, cheaper players to replace them.